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Magnifying glass and many words over black background, with the text SEO (Search Engine Optimization) written with golden letters. Internet marketing and web analytics concept. 3D illustration

There’s no getting around the fact that SEO needs to be a part of your digital marketing plan. Every marketing class of this century has brought it up. Since the dawning of the search engine, marketing professionals have been trying to figure out what can be done to be the first hit that comes up on Google. People have developed algorithms, theorized about posting time, and even peppered their content with random words that don’t necessarily belong there to try to crawl their way up through the search rankings. The question must be asked, “is your content relevant to what the audience is searching for?” That’s when you really need to dive deep into your SEO to see what is working and what’s not.

What is SEO?

SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is “the practice of increasing both the quality and quantity of website traffic, as well as exposure to your brand, through non-paid (also known as “organic”) search engine results.” Or, more simply, it is getting the right people connected to your digital content. A lot of SEO involves determining what people are looking for online and ensuring content that satisfies that particular query is found on your web pages.

Schedule an SEO Audit

In order to get an idea of what is attractive about your content to the web crawlers, you need to take a thorough examination of what you are presenting. See where your content ranks among competitors in a search, learn where links to your site exist elsewhere on the web, and discover any gaping holes in your website where better SEO practices could be used.

In doing a thorough audit, all keywords will be analyzed and assigned a value, according to words the web crawlers are finding that users are entering and set against how many other pages also contain those keywords. You will see value increase or decrease when paired with related words as well.

An audit will also tell you how relevant your content is and if it is of good quality. Google doesn’t penalize bad grammar and spelling, but they do notice if people don’t seem to trust your website because of it. You also want to make sure you’re providing information that really helps your potential buyers and isn’t just page fillers for the sake of cramming keywords.

Why Do an SEO Audit?

Research has found that sites listed on the first page of results from a search have a CTR (click-through rate) of over 70%, but beyond that the results drop significantly to about 6% on the second and third page of results. So, no matter how similar your content is to the person searching for it, it’s possible that only 6% of potential customers are even clicking on your link. Your goal needs to be to hit that first page of results.

Considering that you will probably see from three to five organic links on that first page, your competition window has shrunk. A deep dive will analyze your SEO from the perspective of the crawlers to see how you rank compared to other sites. Your job after that will be to find ways to improve search engine optimization on your site.

What can be done to improve SEO?

This is where things could get even trickier. You may have been able to identify your effective keywords in a search, but can you determine exactly how effective they are? Do your keywords and search phrases take into account the ways your buyers might conduct a search?

Other aspects of your website can also be addressed, including the site loading speed. A slow website can discourage visitors, which then alerts Google that your site may not be of good enough quality to rank well in the search results.

Smaller, but no less important, fixes include titles and meta data for all images and video on your site. Finally, consider giving Google fresh content with relevant keywords and search phrases on a regular basis, such as through a blog or new landing pages. Google loves fresh content, and the more pages your site has, the more likely it will be indexed.

Can SEO be improved without intervention? Sure. But to make dramatic improvements and really reach more people, you are going to need to dive deep. Talk to your consultant from JRS Mar/Com to find out what they can do for you.

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